Saturday, December 1, 2012


Not related to karya, but I wrote all this stuff a long time ago when Prometheus first came out.  Bad Prometheus reviews have since become a kind of genre, so here's my entry into the genre.  Naturally this will spoil the whole movie if you haven't already seen it.

The expedition was ridiculously disorganized and haphazard considering they're walking into some ancient alien complex.

Biologist guys decide "we're going back all alone" because they're scared about weird bodies and stuff.  Yes, let's go back alone so we can get lost.  Even on a normal expedition on Earth I don't think you get two guys throwing a fit and deciding to wander back alone through a maze.  I guess they forgot about the fancy automappers, because they got lost anyway.  I also think you've kind of failed as a storyteller if you need to the characters to tell us what implausible thing happened as their first line: "oh, looks like we're still here because we got lost".  I guess they're fulfilling their Guys Who Get Killed First duty.

Meanwhile, our haphazard other heroes are bumping into things, knocking things over, shouting at each other, and not paying any attention to the android who can mysteriously operate alien machinery.

And someone drops her bag, and decides to dive back into the raging knife storm after it.  Even if it had something they haphazardly ripped off from the complex, and there's like a million cylinders and alien bodies and whatnot in there.  A dropped knapsack is totally worth a knife bath, right?

Then there's this thing where they're all mopey like "oh we didn't find anything, it's all empty, let's give up and go home" when they spent 15 minutes inside a tiny part of a giant complex and saw huge amounts of crazy stuff and alien writing and working machinery and had to run back early because the weather got bad.

There was a strange scene I forgot about with the head.  If you retrieve the head of an ancient alien corpse I guess the first thing you want to do is pump it full of adrenaline, which I guess makes alien heads relive their last moments.  So it will tell you... what it was running from maybe?  Who knows, because they accidentally put in the chemical that makes alien heads explode.  And then they're like shrug, so much for that alien head, and forgot about it entirely, which is what I did too.

And then the biologists (geologists? hard to tell since they didn't seem to do any of either) are stuck in a deeply creepy alien complex and the captain on the ship is just laughing at them.  "Yeah, there's something moving down there, along with all the horribly murdered alien corpses.  Sweet dreams!"  It's like they all knew they were in a movie and these guys were the Guys Who Get Killed First, so the captain is just winking at the audience.

But then the strangest thing is that these guys, after doing stupid things because they're scared, and then getting terrorized more by the captain, and running in the opposite direction from the "something moving", then when they actually see a scary alien they decide it's cute and they want to pet it.  Even after it hisses and makes all kinds of threatening gestures they just want to pick it up.  Aw, the alien snakebeast is hissing, I think it wants to be friends.  Kane wasn't that stupid.

I've never seen a C-section, but I don't think that's how it works.  Vickers' surgery table is mysteriously incompatible with women (I guess it's for the robot then?  But he can amputate his entire body and still be just fine.), but it does have a convenient little organ removal claw.  It also has a convenient button on the outside that floods the inside with poisonous gas.  Forget the critters, when you think about it the operating table is a horror movie all by itself.

Oh and before that she hits one of the doctors / orderlies (who I guess are trying to help her get exploded by an alien? when did they turn into psychopaths?) and both of them apparently decide not to chase her.  Or raise an alarm.  Or do anything else for the rest of the movie.  It's not so much that they forgot to chase her, it's that the scriptwriter forgot they existed.  Then she finishes up with her ordeal and it's like there's a tacit agreement to not mention the attempted murder-by-alien.  When Burke did that in Aliens it took a power failure and alien attack to distract them from killing him on the spot.

Anyway, they get to the Engineer and they're like "let me talk", "no let *me* talk", "me talk me talk me talk!" and hitting each other.  And the Engineer decides the first thing he should do after sleeping through his entire installation being wiped out, is to beat up the critters that woke him up (I understand, they *are* acting like 5 year-olds), and then go find their planet and presumably rain horrible black biological death on it.

Then the captain says "Hey guys, I think we'll have to crash into that ship and kill ourselves.  Because it's taking off, and we can't let alien ships take off.  And I have to be standing here while it happens."  Other guys: "Oh.  Ok.  Sounds like we should stand here too."

The crew in Alien got wiped out, but at least they were trying.


  1. Reading this, I"m kind of glad we missed it when it got to the cheap theatre. Steve threatened to divorce me before we were legally married, if I took him to see it.

  2. Oh, it's not marriage-endingly bad. It's not even terrible. It has nice visuals. It's just that we were all so hopeful about it.